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jrd

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Hi all,
The wife got me a True Brew Gold kit for Christmas and I'm getting ready to make my first batch (Amber). She also picked up the book How To Brew (John Palmer), which is really helpful. However, between the kit instructions (which are vague at best) and the book, I'm trying to figure out what vessel to ferment in. It came with a glass carboy and a plastic bucket with a spigot hole and a lid with an airlock hole. The book refers to the the glass container as a secondary fermenter. There are all sorts of stoppers, a racking tube, and an airlock in the kit.

So, do I ferment in the glass vessel and use the plastic one for bottling? Does it matter? I was originally going to use just the plastic bucket but then it seems as though I'd have to transfer the beer to the glass and back to the plastic again for bottling.

And, if I do my fermentation in the glass, how do I mix in yeast when the time comes? It says to lightly stir it in but there's no way I'm getting a spoon into the the neck of the glass carboy? Like I said, the instructions are not very clear and I want to get it right.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Cheers-jrd
 

blitz10035

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Use the glass for primary. With the Amber you don't need a secondary. You will just transfer to the plastic spigot bucket for bottling. That's a good first brew kit to use to get a feel for the process. I used that for my first and it came out great.

Good Luck!
 

NWMOBrewer

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Do you know how much room the glass carboy has? If it is 6.5 gallons or more, feel free to ferment in it. Do you have 1 or 2 buckets? It sounds like only 1 so I actually recommend the carboy if at least 6.5 gallons. If the carboy is only 5 gallons, then the carboy is a secondary and will be rarely used IMHO.
 

BW210

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I just started brewing with a kit that had a glass carboy and plastic bucket. Check out my thread...

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/my-first-brew-started-293276/

The pictured carboy is a 6 gallon and bucket is 6.8 gallon size. I have added a 6.5 gallon carboy and finished my third brew tonight. I am rotating a new brew every 2 weeks for now... I plan on adding more buckets for single and double fermentation brews throughout the year.

The above thread is my procedure for brewing combining this forum, manufactures directions, youtube and talking to my local brewer.

From one beginner to another... hope it helps.
 
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jrd

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Wow...thanks so much for the replies everyone.
BW210...your instructions are more than I could have hoped for...the pictures are an added bonus. Thanks for sharing...I'm ready to go!!!
I think I'm gonna like it here :)

cheers-jrd
 

RM-MN

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If you find that you enjoy the brewing process and want to continue/increase your brewing you may want to buy another fermenter bucket (or 2 or 3 or .... ). At my local shop they are only about $15 with lid and airlock so they aren't a big investment. With them you would pour the wort in, aerate, pitch yeast, put the lid with the airlock already installed on top and let it ferment. When it is done in 2 to 4 weeks you rack it onto priming sugar solution in the bucket with the spigot and bottle from there. If you have more than one fermenter you can alternate brewing with bottling to keep yourself and your wife in beer.
 
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jrd

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Another newbie question: brewed my first batch today from an Amber kit. I poured the wort into the plastic bucket w/spigot, added yeast, and then used the spigot and a funnel to put it into the glass carboy. Did I screw up? I'm thinking I should have put it in the carboy and then added the yeast.
Will I have flat beer now? If so, can you add more yeast to correct it?
thanks for any responses....still learning here :)
 

RM-MN

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Nope, you didn't screw up, you just did it differently than some. Your wort and yeast should end up in the same vessel but either one would work. If your carboy doesn't have several inches of space above the wort you need to use a blow off tube instead of an airlock (actually it is an airlock, just a much bigger one) to keep letting out the foam so it won't plug.

When your beer is completely fermented in about 3 weeks, siphon it into the bucket that has the spigot right on top of the priming sugar/water mixture you have just boiled and cooled a bit and bottle it from that bucket.
 
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jrd

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Whew...that's good news! Thanks RM-MN. Like an idiot I also broke my airlock (pushed too hard into the stopper) but ended up using a blowoff tube into sanitized water instead. And, it's starting to show signs of fermentation...bubbling a bit now.
Psyched!!!
Glad I went with the Amber for a first time brew..not very complicated (unless you're all thumbs like me :).
 
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jrd

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I have another question for the experienced brewers out there: the instructions in my True Brew All Malt Amber ingredient kit say that fermentation should be complete within 48-72 hours, at which point it says I should wait 3-4 days for settling. It says I should be ready to bottle a week after fermentation begins. This doesn't sound right to me....should I wait 3-4 weeks instead?
Thanks in advance!
 

RM-MN

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If you only have a week between pitching yeast and bottling you are going to get bottles that are overcarbonated in time. They may not explode, mine never did, but they all eventually were foamy monsters.

The more recent brews I have made I have let sit in the primary fermenter for 3 to 4 1/2 weeks and they seemed to mature into a good flavored beer faster than when I bottled earlier. YMMV
 
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I used a True Brew pilsner kit for my first, and I let it sit for two weeks before bottling and it turned out great! 3-4 weeks sounds excessive, but I don't think it will hurt if you do. I got the impression that the kits were designed to get you something drinkable quickly, so I'm sure you'll be OK if you bottle after one week. I thought I'd try two since mine was such a light beer and I wanted to get as much flavor as I could. Of course, I have no basis for comparison if it made any difference, but I'm quite pleased with the way mine turned out.
 
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jrd

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Thanks RM-Mn and Dr.Memory. I think I'll let it go for at least two weeks to be safe.
Cheers-JD
 

BamaRooster

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Do not follow their instructions!!!! 2weeks minimum in the primary, 3 would be better and go straight from the primary to your bottling bucket. The key, and hardest part of brewing, is being patient in the beginning.
 
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